- Volume 17 Issue 1
Similarity has been considered as one of basic concepts of cognitive psychology which is useful for explaining cognitive structure and process. MDS models(Shepard, 1964; Nosofsky, 1991) and Contrast model(Tversky, 1977) were proposed as early models of similarity comparison process. But, there have been a lot of theoretical doubts about the conceptual validity of similarity as a result of empirical findings which could not be explained by early models. Goldstone(1994) assumed that similarity could be defined by alignment processes, and suggested structural alignment as a prospective alternative for solving conceptual controversies so far. In this study, basic assumption and algorithms of MDS models(Shepard, 1944; Nosofsky, 1991) and Contrast model(Tversky, 1977) were described shortly and some theoretical limitations such as arbitrariness of selective attention and correlated structures were discussed as well. The conceptual characteristics and algorithms of SIAM(Goldstone, 1994) were described and how it has been applied to cognitive psychology areas such as categorization, conceptual combination, and analogical reasoning were reviewed. Finally, some theoretical limitations related with data-driven processing and alternative processing and possible directions for structural alignment were discussed.